September 29, 2003



Indonesia Restricts Argentine Agriculture Imports


The government of Indonesia (GOI) has decided to restrict the trade of some commodities including grains and oilseeds from Argentina because of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD).


Argentina witnessed an outbreak of FMD, with the first infection haven taken place on July 28, 2003, a report estimated. The country was subsequently listed among "FMD infected countries" on Sept. 12, 2003.


Imports of listed products have been banned from entry into Indonesia, which includes grain and feed products. The Government of Indonesia will continue to monitor and evaluate Argentina's FMD status periodically every two weeks and whenever the outbreak has been controlled as reported by OIE. The GOI considers this a temporary ban. The result of the new (or the sixty-second) evaluation of the prevention measures against FMD will be announced by the GOI/DGLS soon (sometime next week).


Current Prohibitive Agricultural Imports


Commodities that are listed as currently banned include grain for feed raw material, meat/meat products, ruminants and pigs, fresh and processed milk, semen, eggs and its processed, MBM, fresh and processed forage for ruminants and pigs, finished feed and concentrate for ruminants and pigs, vaccines related with FMD virus and natural drugs and animal drugs containing ruminants and pigs.




In CY02, Argentina exported 172.8 metric tons (0.02% market share) of corn to Indonesia, compared to the United States, which was 69,316.5 MT (6.03% market share). In addition, CY02 exports of soybeans to Indonesia were 77,187 MT, compared to the U.S., which dominates the market with exports totalling 1,121,963 MT (82.18% market share).


Indonesian Traders


Traders are concerned that even if the temporary ban is lifted, it may suddenly be reimposed with no forewarning, based on experiences in 2001 during FMD outbreaks in the EU and South America.


Subject to availability, feed mills prefer to purchase locally produced corn as long as prices are competitive. In Indonesia, U.S. soybeans have the advantage, as the trade prefers the high quality/protein available from U.S. soybeans. U.S. soybeans are predominately used for human consumption (for tofu and tempe), unlike other imported beans. Indonesia is reportedly looking for alternative sources of corn, protein meal such as soybean meal (SBM) or meat bone meal (MBM) and U.S. corn, soybean and soybean meal exporters may just be able to pick up Argentina's lost market share for some products should the price is competitive.